Sungei Buloh Wetlands Reserve

Great Egret (Ardea alba)

Great Egret (Ardea alba)

This is a photographic record of a day trip to Sungei Buloh Wetlands Reserve in western Singapore.

Hapsis and I didn’t stay as long as we could have because a) I was still unused to the heat and humidity, not to mention out of condition and b) I was only a week out from having a toenail ripped off my left foot at a local clinic — the culmination of a botched spur (? whatever do you call it anyway?) removal attempt by myself and a subsequent 8-hour flight causing further damage and an infection). The dressing made my favorite footwear — safety boots — incredibly cramped, but there was no way I was going to go without them, especially on rough ground.

The first thing we saw as we crossed the footbridge from the car park to the Visitors’ Centre was a strange lump in the water which turned out,  on closer examination, to be the head of a monitor lizard.

Malayan Water Monitor Lizard (Varanus salvator)

Malayan Water Monitor Lizard (Varanus salvator)

We decided to take the shortest of the three routes — a 3 km walk — and then decide at its conclusion whether to continue or call it a day.

Common water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes)

Common water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes)

Fish

Fish

On the “wild” side of the bridge we had to cross in order to join the walking trail we saw an estuarine crocodile lazing in the mangroves:

Estuarine crocodile (Crocodylus porosus)

Estuarine crocodile (Crocodylus porosus)

At this rate, I thought, we were going to see lots of stuff — and I was right.

I should mention at this point that the hides, shelters, viewing platforms, trails, signposts and other facilities were excellent and very well maintained. There were signboards with diagrams in the hides and other areas to help with the identification of birds, animals and plants.

A view from a hide

A view from a hide

The elevated platform called the Aerie can be seen at top left.

One hide from another

One hide from another. Photo by Hapsis.

Egret

Egret

Whimbrels (Numenius phaeopus) and other waterbirds

Whimbrels (Numenius phaeopus) and other waterbirds

Mangroves

The Aerie, complete with rooftop egret

The Aerie, complete with rooftop egret

White-bellied sea eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

White-bellied sea eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

White-bellied sea eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

White-bellied sea eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

A White-bellied Sea Eagle being harassed by smaller birds, as seen from the Aerie. It is at times like this that I wish I had a monster lens.

Leaf oyster (Isognomon ephippium)

Leaf oyster (Isognomon ephippium)

Crab

Crab

Rodong (Telescopium telescopium)

Rodong (Telescopium telescopium)

Giant mudskipper (Periophthalmodon schlosseri)

Giant mudskipper (Periophthalmodon schlosseri)

The Giant Mudskipper can grow to 27 cm. This unusual fish, which can live out of water for brief periods as long as its skin and gills are not allowed to dry out, must have been very close to the maximum size for the species.

Estuarine crocodile (Crocodylus porosus)

Estuarine crocodile (Crocodylus porosus)

The crocodile was still bobbing around in the mangroves as we made the return trip across the bridge.

==
Date: 12 December 2009
Camera: Pentax K100D Super
Lens 1: Pentax DA 50-200mm f/4-5.6 ED
Lens 2: Pentax DA 16-45mm F4.0 ED
Ambient light only.
Hand-held only.
Cropping and resizing in Irfanview.

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2 Responses to Sungei Buloh Wetlands Reserve

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Howard Bright, Scooter the Turtle. Scooter the Turtle said: Sungei Buloh Wetlands Reserve « Yet another tentacled thing http://bit.ly/6dpiSt […]

  2. June says:

    Kudos to you ! The photography is excellent, sharp, clear and crisp.

    Luck must have been on your side or you must have been truly patient to have encountered the estuarine crocodile ! I have been there so many times but have not seen a crocodile myself, although I have heard that they do lurk in the mangroves there. There is also a family of otters that I would love to chance upon but have not had the luck so far.

    I was lucky to have encountered a pack of wild dogs swimming across the river there in one line. If you hear dogs barking at Sungei Buloh, that is probably them. Also during another visit I spotted a beautiful pair of bright red/blue/orange (I think) woodpeckers quite like the cartoon ‘Woody Woodpecker’ and also a snake under the boardwalk. Unfortunately, I did not have a good camera to capture that moment, so it slipped me by. The only imprint I took away are the ones locked away in my memory. Unfortunately that cannot be shared with others. Sigh !

    Therefore, may I affirm your efforts at photography, because not only does it document what you see but give others a chance to enjoy the gifts of nature.

    Cheers,
    JF

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